food systems

The Good Work In Urban-Rural

A new course in Sweden asks, “what will a self-sufficient Hällefors Municipality taste like in 2030?” By turning ‘would-be-nice’ ideas into tangible prototypes, it turns ecological transition from an aspiration, into a practice. Included here: 20x emerging new livelihoods - from Edible Food Forests, to School-Farm Biocantines

2023-05-09T09:47:51+00:00October 4th, 2022|bioregioning, food systems, urban-rural|

Back to the Land 2.0 Reader (2019)

Annie Proulx on Barkskins | Simone Weil on The Need for Roots | Pamela Mang on Storying of Place | Jane Memmott on Ecosystem Interactions | Arturo Escobar on Buen Vivir | Gloria E. Anzaldúa on weaving | Ann Whiston Spirn on Bacterial Urbanism | Margaret Wheatley on Emergence | Molly Scott Cato on Gaian Economics | and many more

2022-10-06T16:55:45+00:00May 18th, 2019|food systems, urban-rural|

Social Food Forum: the takeaways

Social food projects re-make relationships between people, food and place | They reconnect urban and rural | As a medium of hospitality, they create solidarity and mutual understanding | They diversify income for farmers | They enhance the health and well-being of socially-isolated people | They can increase biodiversity ...

2022-10-04T10:10:09+00:00March 23rd, 2019|commoning, food systems|

From Neighbourhood To Bioregion: The City as a Living System

The Greek physician Hippocrates described the effects of “airs, waters, and places” on the health of individuals and communities. The industrial age distracted us from this whole-systems understanding of the world - but we are now learning again to think of cities as habitats, and as ecosystems, that co-exist on a single living planet. (Chapter for a new Cite du Design book)

2022-10-04T10:10:09+00:00October 24th, 2018|food systems, newsletter, urban-rural|

From commodities, to connection: A platform for the co-op grains movement

What is the a co-op grains movement, and how does it work? In this case, sixty citizens have each invested in a farmer's field for a year. Together with the farmer, they decided what to grow, how to grow it and what happens with the crop. It's a shared farming experience that supports farmers financially, and emotionally, and connects city people to what it takes to grow food.

2023-04-18T07:32:19+00:00May 25th, 2018|food systems|

Social Farming

The health of the soils, watersheds and biodiversity is in all our interests - so why should farmers do it all on their own? Interest is growing in ways by which citizens can play a practical role. The social, educational and health benefits of social farming can be huge - but they need to be designed....

2023-04-18T07:32:14+00:00May 14th, 2018|food systems|

When Value Arises From Relationships, Not From Things

I’ve come to an inconvenient conclusion: production is not the purpose of life. I say inconvenient because many of us depend on industrial production to meet our daily life needs. But the perpetual search for new forms of production - whether ‘clean’, ‘green’ or ‘circular’ - is not where our future lies. (Interview with Valentina Croci of Domus Magazine)

2022-10-04T10:10:12+00:00March 8th, 2018|earth repair, food systems, nature-connection|

Food As A Commons

People go hungry not because of a shortage of production, but because the food available is too expensive, or they lack the land to grow it on. In California, the prototype of a combined social, political and technical  solution has been launched which promises to unlock the food system crisis.

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2022-10-04T10:14:55+00:00May 13th, 2014|food systems, urban-rural|

Turn-key food hives

Hanging out with health system innovators in recent times I’ve been struck by two interesting things. The first is that the buzz in the investor community about health apps is palpable. To feed the hunger, a new incubator called Rock Health, positioning itself as “the seed accelerator for health [continue …]

2022-10-05T11:36:59+00:00November 2nd, 2011|food systems|

Knife sharpening

Last week I was taught how to sharpen our kitchen knives by a wood carver, Howard Raybould, who’s been honing his technique for 30 years. It’s the most useful skill I’ve acquired since learning how to ride a bike.
Howard arrived bearing: a wooden board; a [continue …]

2022-10-07T15:17:10+00:00June 27th, 2011|food systems|

Shoe Town to Brew Town

When Jimmy Carbone, co-creator of The Good Beer Seal, was considering running for mayor of his old hometown in Haverhill, Massachusetts, he began to ponder possible new uses for industrial buildings that had fallen in to disuse. Could small resource-sharing breweries be a centerpiece of [continue …]

2022-10-04T10:28:43+00:00June 23rd, 2011|food systems|

Has Venice cracked the bottled water conundrum?

Italians are the leading consumers of bottled water in the world. They drink more than 40 gallons per person annually. Among many ecocidal by-products: until recently, discarded plastic bottles littered canals all over Venice, a world heritage site.
Appeals to civic duty came to naught. Exhortation and public education proved ineffective [continue …]

2022-10-04T10:45:18+00:00December 6th, 2010|food systems|

The big chill

Shopping for a snack in central London yesterday evening I counted an extraordinary 78 metres (256 feet) of chiller cabinets in one small central London branch of Marks and Spencer.
Marks and Spencer have made a laudable commitment to make all it UK and Irish operations carbon neutral within five [continue …]

2022-10-04T10:46:18+00:00August 4th, 2010|food systems, most read|

Melons we can believe in

Simon Johnson, former chief economist of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), told the US Congress last week that Japan’s debt path was out of control. Simon warned of “a real risk that Japan could end up in a major default”. [The IMF expects Japan’s gross public debt to reach [continue …]

2009-11-02T19:52:04+00:00November 2nd, 2009|food systems|

One mound at a time

I’ve been on the road most of this month talking and meeting and transitioning (see above) like mad – but not actually dong anything practical. So yesterday I spent the day up in the mountains helping to construct a bio-intensive, multi-layered planting bed under the instruction of a noted agro-ecologist [continue …]

2022-09-28T15:14:32+00:00May 31st, 2009|food systems|

Eating Spin

The British government is in talks with supermarkets about emergency food reserves “in case the infrastructure of the country breaks down”. The exercise is being spun as a response to possible strikes by fuel tanker drivers, but the more likely explanation is that the precarious [continue …]

2008-07-11T07:14:56+00:00July 11th, 2008|food systems|

Innovating our way to oblivion

Out-of-control buzzwords are like locusts: you can swat handfuls of them down with a bat, but more will come to take their place.
I’ve been swatting away for ages in this blog at all things Conceptual, Cultural, Clustered and (especially) Creative. But now we’re suffering a massive counter-attack by the [continue …]

2008-06-16T17:28:49+00:00June 16th, 2008|food systems|
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